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National Zoo asks public to vote to name panda cub

Tuesday - 11/5/2013, 3:51pm  ET

panda2000.jpg
In this handout image provided by Smithsonian's National Zoo, the zoo's six-week-old panda cub is examined October 8, 2013 in Washington, DC. After Congress voted last night to fund the federal budget and increase the nation's debt limit, ending a 16-day government shutdown, the National Zoo is preparing to reopen to the public tomorrow. The Zoo's Information Technology staff began the process of bringing the live animal cams back online this morning, starting with the panda cams. The 15 different camera systems required federal resources, primarily staff, to operate and were deemed non-essential during a shutdown. (Photo by Courtney Janney/Smithsonian's National Zoo via Getty Images)
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WASHINGTON (AP) -- The National Zoo is asking the public to help name its female giant panda cub by voting for one of five Mandarin Chinese names.

The zoo opened voting Tuesday on Election Day online at Smithsonian.com. The winning name will be revealed Dec. 1 at a naming ceremony when the cub is 100 days old, following Chinese tradition.

The names are Bao Bao (bow-BOW), which means precious or treasure; Ling Hua (ling-HWA), which means darling or delicate flower; Long Yun (long-YOON), which is a symbol of luck for panda cooperation between the U.S. and China; Mulan (moo-LAHN), which was the name of a legendary Chinese warrior woman from the 5th century that means magnolia flower; and Zhen Bao (jen-BAO), which means treasure or valuable.


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